For all the drama in this story, this could have been a gripping read, but it felt awkward instead. I learned a bit about the personality of Mark KarpFor all the drama in this story, this could have been a gripping read, but it felt awkward instead. I learned a bit about the personality of Mark Karpeles, whom the book wants us to sympathize with. And I do, now. The argument for his innocence was compelling. That said, I just was not interested in him as a person. I did not need to know how he spent his money, and what that was supposed to say about him. Tabloid details, as far as I'm concerned.
Then the last section of the book seemed to focus on the abysmal state of the criminal justice system in Japan. This section begins with a lengthy detour into this random other case involving another man who happens to like cats (seriously, that was the thread) in order to illustrate the problems with the "guilty until proven guilty" system in Japan.
I get that this is all relevant to the story of Mt. Gox. I'm not sure why I should care so much about the details of how this all went down. In 100 pages, I would have wanted much more detail about how bitcoin actually works, algorithmically, and more of the history and economic theory behind it, OR a completely separate book about Japan's justice system. ...more
Other than the central premise of the book, which can be summarized in its entirety as "your baby can feed themselves", this book was maddeningly dullOther than the central premise of the book, which can be summarized in its entirety as "your baby can feed themselves", this book was maddeningly dull. Perhaps its because I possess just the tiniest amount of knowledge of food and cooking and eating, but it seemed as though 85% of this book was common sense. To be fair, the first few pages were mind-blowing to me, purely because I had assumed I would be feeding my baby purees. So all it took were a few basic facts about baby self-feeding before I was sold. As others have noted, this book could have been a pamphlet, not 239 pages.
This book was clearly written by and for mothers who both 1) worry about everything and 2) are surrounded by family and friends who constantly weigh in on how they are parenting and thus need an arsenal of explanations to defend their own choices and 3) Need 239 pages of reassurance that everything will be OK and 4) are utterly lacking confidence that they will make discoveries about how to feed their child along a bumpy road, and thus need a detailed map of every conceivably possible obstacle that they might encounter. This book is exhausting, and depressing.
I kept reading though, because there were a handful of useful nuggets sprinkled sparsely throughout. So maybe I can spare you the agony of wading through the repetition, conjecture, obvious statements, and overblown worries by summarizing the salient parts.
1. Babies do not like to be force-fed mush on a spoon. They are programmed to want to copy their parents and do become independent and explore different textures. Eating should be fun. 2. The process of figuring out how to chew and swallow a wide variety of types of food can help the fine muscles required for talking, so it might help the development of speech. 3. Younger babies gag reflex is triggered much closer to the front of the mouth than older babies and adults, which might help prevent choking on food before the baby is ready to swallow. 4. Don't worry if your baby is not consuming large quantities of food before age 1. Trust that when baby needs food for the extra nutrients, they will eat. 5. Trust that your baby will choose the foods that they need. They often go through "fads" where they will only want to eat one or two types of food. This is common, and it means that the baby needs some nutrient in that food. Every child has unique tastes and nutritional needs. 6. Trust that your baby will not decide to live off of chocolate chips. Babies who have control over what they eat, for whom eating is enjoyable, will most likely choose a balanced diet for optimal health. 7. As for dos and don'ts foodwise for the under-one crowd: No honey, no nuts, limit tuna and sardines (mercury), slice grapes down the middle, limit high-fiber foods (like bran) that can be too filling, limit salt. No packaged food, no junk food, no sugary deserts. Talk to your pediatrician about introducing foods if your family has a history of allergies or intolerances.
OK, that's it! If you still have questions after reading this, then by all means go ahead and read the whole book.
Bonus: there were some truly weird passages in the book too, including:
1) A complaint from a mother who claimed that making purees for her child took two hours each night. LADY. What are you doing? 2) Seemingly 34.6% of this book could be summarized as: "Baby-Led Weaning is Messy, OMG, How will you ever survive - but don't worry, you can clean up the mess! Babies are babies." 3) A food suggestion that made me laugh out loud: "celery (strings removed)". HAHAHA. Can you imagine? I'm crying laughing thinking about spending 20 minutes de-stringing celery (which has like zero calories and trace nutrients anyway) only for baby to reject it. HAHA. 4) This totally weird anecdote, provided without citation: "There is research that suggests that we get particular enjoyment out of eating crunchy foods. It seems that massive bursts of ultrasound are generated with the very first bite and that these trigger pleasure receptors in the brain." Something about this screams: "hey, I read this on the internet somewhere, and it NEEDS to go in the book!" Yay random factoids. Sorry, it might be true, but in the context of a book that boasts NINE (9) total references, two of which are dictionaries (?), this is, um, discombobulating.